Mobile Conference - A revolution in the user experience

Mobile Voice Conference covers the next innovation driving the economy San Jose, CA.

The slow economic recovery worldwide has lead to questions about whether there is a core problem, a lack of a new technology breakthrough to drive an economic expansion. Articles such as “Has the ideas machine broken down?” in the January 12 issue of The Economist sound this theme, citing concern by experts that today’s technology is simply incrementally extending existing advances rather than creating a new base for “intensive growth.”

Dr. William Meisel, president of technology analysis firm TMA Associates, claimed that there is an breakthrough that has the potential to drive a new wave of economic development. “The explosion of smartphones and tablet computers is indicative of a desire by individuals to always have with us the power of computers to provide us information and entertainment and to keep us connected to others,” he said. “The maturing of speech recognition and natural language understanding technologies, symbolized by personal assistant technology, compounds this development by making what is now available easily usable. This combination is fundamental, and offers new business opportunities to entertain, inform, and reach customers that didn’t exist before.”

Meisel noted that major industry players have recognized this major paradigm shift and are investing heavily in making it achieve its potential. “It will be a driver of major changes in customer service and sales, automotive systems, entertainment, advertising, and many other fields.”

The Mobile Voice Conference ( was created by the industry organization Applied Voice Input Output Society (AVIOS) and Meisel’s TMA Associates to highlight this advance and how companies can benefit from it. The conference will be held at the Hyatt Regency San Francisco, April 15-16. The conference will address the increasing acceptance and role of speech recognition, text-to-speech synthesis, biometric speaker authentication, natural language processing, and knowledge representation as a means of interacting with users of mobile devices such as smartphones and tablet computers, as well as the impact of voice personal assistants and related voice technology in other areas such automobiles. The integration of voice with other modalities such as touch screens is another key topic of the conference.

About the Applied Voice Input Output Society

AVIOS is non-profit organization promoting practical applications of speech technology (such as speech recognition and natural language processing) for over 30 years. AVIOS created the Mobile Voice Conference, has local chapters in many major cities, and provides a forum for discussion of technical and commercial issues resulting from advances in voice technology and speech understanding.

About TMA Associates

Bill Meisel's TMA Associates publishes the industry newsletter, Speech Strategy News. Bill’s blog,, provides observations on user connections to mobile devices. Dr. Meisel, a former professor of electrical engineering and computer science, is author of a technical book on computer pattern recognition and founded an early company developing speech recognition technology.

The voice-enabled mobile personal assistant--part of a chain reaction?

The annual Mobile Voice Conference (MVC, in San Francisco, March 12-14, organized by the Applied Voice Input Output Society (AVIOS) and TMA Associates, addresses the use of voice technology such as speech recognition in commercial applications. Interest in the conference this year is driven in part by the success of Apple's Siri voice-driven personal assistant and similar capabilities being added to phones with other operating systems, as well as the spread of this "intelligent agent" behavior to other markets.

The flexibility and acceptance of Siri leads to a question: How did speech recognition suddenly get so good after years of what most observers have viewed as mediocre success at best? Most consumers have encountered speech recognition when they called a customer service line and usually found the interaction only marginally better than pressing touch-tone keys. What caused this "tipping point," where flexible speech recognition is beginning to grow not only on mobile phones, but in automobiles, for controlling TV, playing games, providing better customer service, and more?

The truth is that, while Apple may have driven realization of the maturing of speech technology, the current state of the technology has been driven not by a single tipping point, but more by a chain reaction of tipping points that built up to the point of explosion, according to Bill Meisel, president of TMA Associates and the MVC program organizer.

In technology, Meisel claimed, an accumulation of "tipping points" (re Malcolm Gladwell's best-seller) can work together to create a chain reaction that spreads in multiple directions and markets. Speech recognition in particular is in the middle of such a chain reaction. The result will drive fundamental changes in many markets.

The beginning of the chain reaction for speech technology is a combination of improving wireless connectivity, growth in the use of smartphones, pervasive use of the Web, lower cost of computing power to support compute-intensive processes such as speech recognition, the growing variety and complexity of web sites and applications, a steady improvement in the underlying core speech technology, and the growing availability and variety of labeled speech data to build better speech recognition models. The continuing explosion in the use of speech technology is the result of three key factors:

(1) Enthusiasm for a user interface innovation that is particularly effective on small devices such as a mobile phone or when hands-free use is safer and more convenient (e.g., when driving);

(2) The over-burdening of the Graphical User Interface by growing web and app variety (particularly evident on small devices); and

(3) The simplicity, efficiency, and generality of the personal assistant model ("just say or type what you want, and get directly to the answer").

The Mobile Voice Conference, coming up shortly, provides attendees with information to help them take advantage of the rapidly developing opportunities created by the chain reaction in the use of speech technology. It covers the implications of this development in many areas, including marketing, enterprise use, and customer service. The talks provide examples of how to apply this development successfully in your business and resources for doing so. The detailed program is available at In one innovation, the first day of the conference, Vendor Day on Monday, March 12, is free.

About the Applied Voice Input Output Society

AVIOS is non-profit organization promoting the speech technology industry for over a quarter-century. For more info, see

About TMA Associates

Bill Meisel's TMA Associates publishes Speech Strategy News, a no-ads, paid-subscription newsletter with 225 monthly issues so far. TMA also provides consulting services in practical applications of speech technology and associated market development.



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